Trademark clearance certificates are requested to search trademarks that are published by the trademark registrar asserting that the applied artistic work is not deceptively synonymous or identical to a trademark duly registered under the Trademark Act. It furthermore helps ensure that no such requests are for the same artistic creation that is applied for by someone else.
To receive a trademark clearance certificate, a request through form TM- C must be filed to the appropriate trademark office with the necessary details and particulars. This encompasses the name, address, and contact details of the applicant including their phone number and email address.
Further, the petition must also disclose the nature of the applicant whether individual, company, partnership, LLP, or HUF. If the application is filed by the agent then the form TM-C must disclose the name, address, and contact details of the agent, along with their authorization or power of attorney.
Further of the agent filed the same, the nature of the agent must also be cited, whether they are trademark agents, advocates, or constituted attorneys. Lastly, the form must include the details of the artistic work through three copies of its image or logo (33cm*20cm) and that of the individual submitting the document.
Presently, the request for such filing is carried out through manual Filling and e-filling. Wherein the applicant or its agent chooses to execute a manual filling, they have to personally move and hand over their application for its registration to the Registrar Office of Trade Marks placed in the appropriate jurisdiction be it Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Ahmedabad, or Chennai.
Subsequently, the applicant must wait for at least 15 -20 days to obtain the receipt of the acknowledgment. However wherein an applicant chooses to apply e-filing system, the applicant will receive a receipt of acknowledgment immediately on the government website. Once this acknowledgment slip is received, the applicant is competent to use their Trademark (TM) logo or symbol along with their brand name.
All details concerning the fees payable for Form TM-C are available in the First Schedule of the Trademark Rules of 2017. A request for search and issue of a certificate is governed by Rule 22(1) and the fees payable for the same is INR 10000 for Physical filing and INR 9000 for E-filing.
Wherein the applicant wishes for an expedited search and issue of the certificate, they can make such requests under Rule 22 (3).
However, this is accomplished only through only E-filing with a fee payable of INR 30000. After the form is submitted with supporting documents and the required fee is paid, the Registrar administers the examination and search within 30 days.
The Registrar then provides the outcomes of the search to publish the certificate. Where there is no indistinguishable or identical trademark, then the Registrar will publish the trademark clearance certificate and transmit the same to the applicant.
Given, that the Registrar may mandate a statement of requirements from the applicant and if the provisions are not satisfied or completed within 2mos from the date of such calling of the statement, the plea under Form TM-C is considered as abandoned.
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Advocate Rahul Dev is a Patent Attorney & International Business Lawyer practicing Technology, Intellectual Property & Corporate Laws. He is reachable at rd (at) patentbusinesslawyer (dot) com & @rdpatentlawyer on Twitter.
Quoted in and contributed to 50+ national & international publications (Bloomberg, FirstPost, SwissInfo, Outlook Money, Yahoo News, Times of India, Economic Times, Business Standard, Quartz, Global Legal Post, International Bar Association, LawAsia, BioSpectrum Asia, Digital News Asia, e27, Leaders Speak, Entrepreneur India, VCCircle, AutoTech).
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